The Social Security Administration (SSA) administers two disability programs for disabled Americans. The SSI (Supplemental Security Income) and SSDI (Social Security Disability Insurance) provide income benefits for individuals who have a medical or psychological condition that prevents them from working. However, both programs have very strict rules for submitting applications. In addition, applicants must meet strict income, asset, work, and medical requirements to qualify for Social Security disability benefits.
If your SSA disability claim has been denied, Pinder Plotkin LLC can help. Our Maryland Social Security disability attorneys have extensive experience filing disability claims and appealing denials of claims. Call 410-661-9440 to schedule a free consultation with one of our SS disability lawyers.
Reasons Why Your Social Security Disability Claim May Be Denied
The SSA may deny an SSDI or SSI disability claim for many reasons. Some of the common reasons why your application for disability benefits may be denied include:
- Incomplete Application
It is crucial that each section of the application is complete. You must provide all required information and documentation. If you omit information, your application may be denied for a technical or clerical reason.
- You Exceed Income Requirements
If you earn more than the maximum income requirements for Social Security disability, your application can be denied. As part of the requirements for SS disability benefits, you must not be able to perform a Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) to earn income to support yourself. The SGA for 2018 is $1,180 for most individuals. If you are blind, the SGA is $1,970. Proving that you cannot work because of your condition can be difficult.
A Maryland disability attorney understands the income requirements. It can be very helpful to have an experienced attorney at your side to help you refute denials based on earnings.
- You Do Not Meet the Definition of Disability
The SSA has clearly defined requirements for meeting the definition of disabled. If you do not meet all three elements, your application for disability benefits will be denied. To be considered disabled, your condition prevents you from performing the work you did before your disability; you cannot adjust to other work; and, your disability will result in death, has lasted 12 months, or is expected to last for at least 12 months.
- Lack of Medical Evidence
In addition to meeting income requirements and the definition of disabled, you must submit sufficient medical evidence that substantiates your claim of a mental or physical condition that rises to the level of a disability. It is important to remember that you may have a condition, but the severity of the condition may not rise to the level of a disability.
The SSA has detailed guidelines for adults and children (the Blue Book) that lists many of the conditions that may qualify as a disabling condition. The list of impairments for each condition is extremely detailed. Your medical evidence must meet or exceed the requirements for your condition. It can be very helpful to include doctor’s notes stating you require a modified work schedule or cannot work because of your condition.
In some cases, the SSA may require you to submit to a medical examination or psychological examination by a medical provider chosen by the SSA. A Maryland disability attorney can provide guidance and legal advice about the required examination and your legal rights.
- Failing to Follow a Doctor’s Treatment Plan
Refusing treatment or failing to follow your doctor’s treatment plan could result in a denial of your application. The claims examiner may state that your claim cannot be adequately evaluated because you are not following a treatment plan. If you were following your treatment plan, you might be able to work; therefore, you would not meet the definition of disabled.
- You Did Not Work Enough to Earn The Required Work Credits
SSDI requires that you work a certain number of years to be qualified to receive SSDI benefits. For each quarter of a year you work, you are assigned work credits. The number of work credits you must earn is based on your age and other factors. If you do not earn the required work creditors, your application for SSDI is denied. However, a Maryland Social Security disability lawyer can help you apply for and possibly qualify for SSI benefits.
Contact our Maryland Social Security Disability Attorneys for Help
Navigating the SSA’s application process for disability benefits can be frustrating and overwhelming. Having an experienced disability attorney at your side to guide you through the process can help avoid some of the errors or mistakes that result in a denial of your claim. If your claim has been denied, we will review your case to determine if you should file an appeal.
Contact the Pinder Plotkin Legal Team for a free consultation with one of our Parkville disability attorneys. You may reach our office by calling 410-661-9440 or using the contact form on our website.
The information provided in this website is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject. The information contained in this blog is also subject to change and should not be relied upon. Contact the Pinder Plotkin Legal Team for a FREE consultation.